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NCC warns against importation of unapproved equipment

By The Citizen
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The Nigerian Communication Commission has also warned stakeholders to secure an approval for any type of communication equipment before importing them into the country.

The Executive Vice-Chairman of the commission, Dr. Eugene Juwah, gave the warning during a sensitisation workshop organised for experts in the communication sector in Lagos.

During the workshop, experts were educated on 'Equipment type approval: A mandatory regulatory tool for safe telecommunication industry.'

He emphasised that adhering to regulations was important for health safety and quality service challenges, which could result from non-approved or sub-standard phones.

Juwah said, 'Equipment type approval is one of the key regulatory functions the commission is saddled with. The NCC Act 2003, section 132 empowers the commission to carryout type approval of all communications equipment for use in the Nigerian market.

'It is, therefore, an offence punishable under the law to import or sell communications equipment prior to obtaining Type Approval certificate from the commission.

'The main objective is to ensure that communications equipment intended for the Nigerian market have fully complied with Nigerian and international standards as it relates to Electromagnetic Radiation, Electromagnetic Compatibility and Specific Absorption Rate for human safety and other regulatory key performance indicators for the promotion of better quality of service.'

He lamented that poor power supply and insecurity contributed to some of the challenges faced by the commission.

He added, 'The commission is aware of the proliferation of sub-standard phones and other equipment by unpatriotic elements in the society. This is not only detrimental to human health but also contributes to the quality of service in the industry. Quality of service in general is a major challenge in the industry.

'The challenges are mainly due to capacity constraints as a result of environmental factors such as insecurity, vandalisation of telecoms installations, theft of generators, delay in getting right of way, delay in securing planning commission for network expansion, lack of consistent power supply and community issues among others.'

To resolve the challenges, he explained that the commission was engaging major stakeholders for a way forward.

'The commission is working hard with relevant stakeholders to resolve all these issues and will continue to hold service providers accountable for poor quality of service in the industry,' he added.

Participants at the workshop, however, commended the commission for the sensitisation programme.